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Short videos are more effective

By May 5, 2016March 23rd, 2020Uncategorized


The truth about video duration

As a leading explainer video company, we know that the world around us moves at an ever-increasing pace, and the way customers consume media and information seems to be evolving at the same speed. We know that animated explainer videos are great tools for businesses to boost their online presence in an accessible way but how should you start to plan them and most importantly, how long should they be. Well statistics show that when it comes to animated explainer videos or corporate videos the optimum length of any material you produce is 2 minutes. After that you’ll start to lose viewers pretty quickly.

Retaining your message

But why are short online videos more effective in engaging your audience? Surely you can get more messages across in a longer video? In theory, yes, but research shows that if you try to bombard the viewer with multiple messages in a 5 minute video, they will retain less of your messaging than they would if you kept your video short and simple. If the online video is too long or contains multiple messages, it can even end up creating a negative impact on the viewer (as they’ll associate boredom with your brand!). The stats certainly back this up.

So let’s look at why shorter animated explainer videos are more effective when delivering your message and engaging your audience.

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Attention spans

In the digital world, addressing attention spans (or lack of them) is critical for any explainer video company. Generally our digital attention span is much shorter than our real world attention span. We know that whatever digital media we are viewing can be replaced and substituted with something else in a heartbeat. We can click ‘Stop’, ‘Next’, ‘More’ or even ‘Close’ way before we’ve engaged with even half the content we’re presented with.

Be honest, how many times have you closed a page that you’ve not yet reached the bottom of?

So the online digital experience exaggerates modern life’s shortening attention spans and makes short bursts of communication much more powerful.


Shorter animated films cost less! Its that simple.

Now we need to stress that this is NOT always the case with live action video marketing but it’s certainly true when producing animated explainer videos.

Yes, you can spend just as much producing a 30 second viral as you could producing a 10 minute brand film, but generally speaking, shorter videos require less post production (ie animation etc), less pre-production (much less to storyboard etc) and even less delivery time – They can be uploaded and shared much quicker due to the final smaller file size. So producing short play animated explainer videos can be beneficial to your marketing budget.

explainer video company


However, one of the main reasons that short online videos have greater traction and impact is down to mobile streaming. We’re now very used to seeing video online and we don’t accept blocky, grainy, overly compressed footage anymore, as we’re now accustomed to watching HD on our portable devices even if we’re in the middle of the woods!

Shorter video will stream and download much quicker due to it’s physical attributes. Their file sizes are smaller and so they are easy and quick for customers to view and more importantly share or send.


As mentioned earlier on, keeping your online video message simple and clear will result in greater impact and engagement. Yes, your product may have 20 USPs but if you try to ram them down your customers throats they’ll end up dazed and overloaded with all the points you want to get across. Or worse still, they’ll become snow-blind by all your information and click off the video, having remembered none of it. If you have lots to say then the best way is to produce several short videos rather than one long epic!

explainer video company

There’s not really much else to say on this. However, one of the best ways to highlight why shorter video marketing works is to examine your own online video habits. Make a mental note every time you don’t finish a video that you’ve started playing – check to see when you stopped, and ask yourself why.

Most online behaviour is universal so when producing your video marketing material ask yourself whether you’d be willing to watch it to the end. If the answer is no then you can put good money on the chance that no-one else will either.

To find out more about us and our services, please click here.

fortyfoursixteen films

fortyfoursixteen films has over 15 years experience producing high quality video content for leading brands and organisations throughout the UK. Headed up by lead producer Neil Waddington we aim to create innovative, inspiring and engaging video for a wide variety of digital delivery platforms.